Columbia, SC (WLTX) - Governor Nikki Haley says the state is doing everything it can to protect people's identity after a hacker took millions of people's personal data.
Haley held a media briefing Monday morning alongside State Law Enforcement Division Director Mark Keel and James Etter, Director of the State Department of Revenue.
Last Friday, state leaders revealed that 3.6 million South Carolina Social Security numbers had been compromised when a foreign national hacked a Department of Revenue server. The cyber thief also took 387,000 credit and debit card numbers on file.
Previous Coverage: 3.6 Million SC Social Security Number Stolen | Haley Promises Changes | How to Get Help | State Had Warnings
The governor said Monday all the security holes have been "plugged" in state servers, making a similar breach less likely. The Social Security numbers were not encrypted, she said, because that's not standard procedure on that type of data.
She says no state employee has been disciplined over the breach, saying no one could have avoided this. She adds that law enforcement is currently worried only about finding the hacker and bringing him to justice.
After the breach was discovered, the state contracted with credit agency Experian to offer one year of free credit services for people who are affected. Haley said people have until the end of January 2013 to call the identity service to sign up for the help.
People can sign up by calling 1-866-578-5422 or by going to www.protectmyid.com/scdor and using the activation code "scdor123." The call center is open 9:00 AM - 9:00 PM EST on Monday through Friday and 11:00 AM - 8:00 PM EST on Saturday and Sunday.
Since the call center opened, Haley said 455,000 call have come in, and 154,000 people have signed up.
Responding to questions about the potential cost of the service, Haley said the state is in negotiations with Experian, and says the state will get a wholesale price.
The governor said right now, it's not clear whose identities were compromised. She says minors will be covered if they showed up on people's tax forms. She says people will sign up, and eventually they'll receive a letter detailing a family plans that people will be enrolled in.